FOOTBALL: Tributes have been paid to former Norwich and Manchester City manager John Bond, who died yesterday aged 79.
Having begun his coaching career by leading Bournemouth to promotion from the old fourth division at the end of his first season in charge, Bond's mid-1970s spell with Norwich saw him develop into one of the game's most colourful characters.
After leading the Norfolk outfit back into the top flight, the former West Ham defender then guided them to the 1975 League Cup final, which they lost to Aston Villa.
The Canaries led the tributes to Bond, who remains the second longest-serving manager in the club's history.
A spokesperson said: "Norwich City Football Club is saddened to learn of the death of former manager John Bond at the age of 79.
"During his tenure he brought players such as World Cup winner Martin Peters to Norwich City, which helped trigger an exciting brand of attacking football at Carrow Road.
"Everybody at Norwich City Football Club would like to send their sincere condolences to John's family and friends.'
Bond also enjoyed a spell at Manchester City and took them to the 1981 FA Cup final, only to lose out in the replay when Ricky Villa scored a memorable winner.
Citizens club ambassador and former player Mike Summerbee said: "John was a football man, he knew the game inside out. As a person outside of football, he was a wonderful man.
"He was such a lovely man and it's a very sad day."
Howard Wilkinson, chairman of the League Managers' Association, added: "John was a real character with a great sense of humour and presence.
"He will be sadly missed."
Bond, born in Colchester, Essex, played some 444 first-team games for the Hammers after coming through their Academy and was an ever-present as Ron Greenwood's side won the 1964 FA Cup with victory over Preston at Wembley.
Ken Brown played alongside Bond in the Irons defence and would later be his assistant at both Bournemouth and Norwich, before taking charge at Carrow Road himself and winning the League Cup in 1985.
Brown said: "We all knew he had been ill for a while - I checked in on him to see how he was doing, so it is very sad that he has now gone.